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08.10.2005 General News

COPAL adopts strategy for fair price

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Accra, Oct. 8, GNA - The Cocoa Producers' Alliance (COPAL), an inter-governmental organisation, said on Friday that it was adopting a two-prong approach to ensure that producing countries received fair prices for their products in the world market.

There are encouraging increased domestic consumption of cocoa products in all member countries which are soon to outdoor production polices that would stem over production and restrict the quantity of cocoa entering the world market to attract good prices.

Mr. Hope Sona Ebai, Secretary General of COPAL, who was addressing journalists at the end of the 68th General Assembly of the Council of Ministers COPAL, however, ruled out the adoption of a quota system to control production, saying that it would be difficult to manage any such system in agricultural production.

"That is why the COPAL is urging member countries to step up their domestic consumption policies to allow for limited tonnes of cocoa on the world market," he said.

COPAL is an intergovernmental organisation created in 1962 with its headquarters in Nigeria and comprises representatives of the governments of Brazil, Cote d'Ivoire, the Dominican Republic, Gabon, Malaysia, Sao Tome and Principe, Togo and Ghana.

The organisation accounts for approximately 75 per cent of the total world cocoa production.

Mr Ebai said it was this concern that enforced the organisation's launch of the maiden COPAL Cocoa Week in Accra, Ghana, last Saturday. The General Assembly also saw the elections of new officers for the 2005/2006 Cocoa Season with Cote d'Ivoire, the world's major producer, assuming the chairmanship of the organisation.

Mr Amadou Soumahoro, Cote d'Ivoire Minister of Trade said his country would do everything possible to make its tenure a success.